Usually at the trade deadline, there are clearly defined buyers and sellers. If a team is on the very fringes of contention, they often stand pat and let the chips fall where they may so that they don’t spend assets on a long shot chance at the playoffs or sell off a player that could have given them the 1⁄2 game that would have gotten them into the playoffs.
At this year’s deadline, the Rays seemed to be positioned strongly as sellers. They aren’t having a terrible year, but they have basically no chance of winning the the AL East with the Red Sox and Yankees causing terror and the wild card race is equally as grim. For the most part, that played out as the team traded away catcher Wilson Ramos and pitcher Chris Archer.
However, the team also curiously acquired outfielder Tommy Pham from the Cardinals. Pham is coming off a very strong year in 2017 but has seen his stock fall a bit in 2018 and his relationship with the Cardinals’ front office deteriorated. It was a boon for the Rays as Pham has real upside and is under team control through 2021.
Unfornuately, his tenure with the Rays is not off to an ideal start as he is headed for the DL.
Fractured foot for #Rays Pham— Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) August 3, 2018
Pham goes on 10-day DL for #Rays, LHP Adam Kolarek called up for now— Marc Topkin (@TBTimes_Rays) August 3, 2018
Pham was injured after being struck by a pitch on his foot. Initially, the team thought that he had escaped with just a bruise, but later examinations clearly have shown that the injury was more severe. Topkin’s reporting noted that the team hopes to have him back in the lineup within a month although, as is the case with most injuries, it depends largely on how he heals.
Tommy Pham has posted a .244/.332/.393 line in 2018 with 14 home runs in 98 games.